thread: 2012-12-26 : Positioning: what about Resource and Effectiveness?

On 2012-12-28, rabalias wrote:

Vincent, I don't think I really understand why you're distinguishing legitimacy vs effectiveness. I mean, I know that a lot of games make a mechanical distinction between what you can do and whether it works, and it clearly has the potential to be a helpful distinction in play. But for purposes of discussing positioning, isn't effectiveness just a subset of legitimacy?

"I pull a gun"
"I shoot him"
"Ok, he falls down dead"

"I pull a gun"
"I shoot him"
"He falls down dead"

"I pull a gun and shoot him. He falls down dead."

...Many games follow the format in Ex1, i.e. that there's a division of labour into the guy who says what his character does, and the guy who says what the outcome of that action is (player/GM). But plenty of games follow the format in Ex2 or even Ex3, where there is no such distinction. One person can make both decisions, and even roll them into one per Ex3. And unless you're in an Ex1-type game, I can't see why you'd need to distinguish action from outcome: either way, the rest of the table has the chance to not say "ok" if they want to.


This makes R go "'You don't even have a gun' vs 'He dodges the bullet'."
If I say that you don't have a gun, I'm contesting the legitimacy of your move. If I say that he dodges the bullet, I'm confirming the legitimacy of your move and building on it, with a move of my own which just happens to counter the effectiveness of yours. EVERYBODY has to agree (most often implicitly) on the legitimacy of each and every move, before we even care about effectiveness.

This makes RQ go "Right, but every move has its opposite"
If it's a move for you to say "he dodges the bullet" then it could equally be a move for me to say, instead, that he does not dodge it, but instead falls down dead. The fact that "I shoot you" is a statement about my character's actions while "you do not dodge but rather fall down dead" is a statement about your character seems an odd distinction to make in a conversation about how we all own the shared imaginary space equally. The move you describe (dodge) only counters the effectiveness of my move (shoot) because of an implied intention to hit you. If I openly state that intention as part of my move (shoot and hit) then you can only counter it by disputing the legitimacy of my move. Right?

This makes R go "I don't believe that's the point."
You're framing it in terms of the result, relative to what you want to get out of the fiction. But this is a distinction of process. And if you say "I shoot and kill him", I can well legitimate the first half of your statement/move while disagreeing with the second: "Shoot, sure, but he ain't dead yet". It may be an ownership issue, but it hasn't got to. Your move of shooting a gun is *legitimate* if we all agree it's what happened (in the SIS). It needs be legitimate *before* we can establish whether it's also effective or not. Dodging bullets or dieing are also moves subject to a legitimacy check first, an effectiveness check next.

This makes...
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